Jacob Little

The dos and don’ts of paddleboarding

  • From Spectator Life
Image: iStock

Searches for paddleboarding locations across the country have risen hugely over the last 18 months, with the global market for paddle boards now estimated to be worth around £7 billion. Stand Up Paddleboarding, also known as SUP, is a popular way to easily and cheaply get out on to the water, without having to purchase a huge amount of equipment or carry racks, as you would for kayaking, for example. Paddleboarding is suitable for both exploring the coastline or paddling around the lochs and lakes of the UK, making it an extremely versatile way of providing you with freedom and ability to gain your sea legs on a small budget.

What type of paddleboard do I need?

If you’re thinking of giving it a go, spend a little bit of time discussing what kind of paddling you’d like to do with your local outdoor or coastal adventure company – they’re usually more than happy to help and will guide you through the process of choosing the right board – often taking you out on taster sessions and guidance trips to teach you the basics. Adventure companies up and down the country are also experts on their local area, so it’s also worth picking their brains on local spots, interesting locations and adventurous trips once you get a little more proficient. For most people, inflatable, all-round paddleboards are the best option and you’ve probably come across them at your local lake or beach. They come with their own pump and roll up in compact bags so you can put them in the boot of the car easily. Touring SUPs tend to be longer and narrower for easier movement through the water for longer trips, yoga SUPs have larger, grippier pads on the surface of the board and surf SUPs are more akin to traditional surfboards and feel less ‘floaty’ on flat sea but come into their own in terms of manoeuvrability when riding the waves.

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